Wednesday, June 29, 2005

IPOD TO: Morcheeba
WEB TO: Bolt City

Recently, with the start of Everything Stupid, I have been looking for similar projects, when I came across -- Illustration Friday. This is a weekly illustration club, where topics are posted, and every friday, illustrators from all grades post thier work based on the topic. Sounds like a hellof alot of fun so I have signed up, and will share my weekly updates here. I look forward to attempting that.

Nothing significant to share, so I'll leave you with a bit of zen. Take a deep breath, and prepare yourself for some Cute Things.

Sunday, June 26, 2005

IPOD TO: Ben Kweller
WEB TO: The Digital Pencil

I made it out to see "Batman Begins" and "Howl's Moving Castle" this weekend. It seems like everyone is in love with the Batman movie except me. I am really tired of Comic Book movies in general and this is no exception. It IS the best Batman of the franchise thanks to the director. if you like realisim in your comic book flick, then you'll enjoy this. It's the complete opposite of Tim Burton's vision. I guess my problem is, no matter which way the mythology is told, it's still just Batman. The movie is a sensational summer blockbuster, and all that that implies.

"Howl's Moving Castle" on the otherhand was amazing! It never seizes to amaze me how fanciful and whimiscal Miyzaki's worlds are. This one is no different. Wizards, Witches, and Steam Powered technology! Gotta love it.

So I wanted to show you the Grapevine trail at one of the many scenic overlooks. This is the only shot I got because I forgot to bring the camera on the ride. So I rode back with it, and this is about 1/4 mile in from the trailhead. But there are several photo opportunites along the trail.
I'll try to snap some more shots of the trails we've been riding. If you didn't know any better, you woudn't know it was Dallas.

Monday, June 20, 2005

IPOD TO: Thievery Corporation
WEB TO: Mike Manley Blogs

7 days later I finally post. Lame I know. It just means I have nothing going on to report. I guess that in itself can be considered good. The truth is I got a new game. Well a demo actually, Battlefield 2. Oh it's the shizzle if you are into it. I am. So in the meanwhile, here is something educational.

[Technical Mumbo-Jumbo Ahead]
I would like to share is a nugget of internet for you Shading freaks out there.
This result had been elusive to me because I wasn't thinking about what I actually needed to achieve. My problem for several months now was that I couldn't easily create HDR maps for use as reflections. Any experienced shader will tell you that controlling the reflections go a long frakin* way as to achieving realism. Well, with Mental Ray it's ashame not to utilize the 32 bit color space and that gives more range in the result. So the problem became, how can I make HDR maps on the fly? I knew there had to be a way to fake HDR so I could take any image I find off the web, and treat it, and get a result that worked for HDR casting. This guy presents a simple yet obvious solution that works amazing! I utilized it for a spot that showcased reflections. I was able to give some amazingly realistic results from standard imagry. No special photography was needed. It's not identical, but I challenge anyone to do thier own side by side, and the result is so impressive it convienced me. So now my resources for reflection control are up to my imagination. So enjoy this quick tute. It assumes that you understand the basis of shading in whatever package you are using. I was able to apply it in practice no problem. Enjoy.

*( Thanks Battlestar Gallatica for that one! )

Monday, June 13, 2005

IPOD TO: Cars Trucks Buses - Phish
WEB TO: Tirade

Well, due to a screwup, was down since Saturday night. Ooops Me!
It's been resolved and measures have been taken to ensure it won't go down again. ( at least for the same reason! )

I've made my first posting to the "Everything Stupid" experiment. I'm going to really have to work at getting into the swing of things. Especially making time to draw daily!

So Kim's birthday is coming up this month, and we decided to get her a Jamis Mountain Bike.
It's a sweet ride if I don't say so for myself. It got me inspired to ride again, so I dusted off my Santa Cruz that hadn't been ridden since last season and headed to the trials. Of course as soon as I got out there 2 miles in, my saddle broke beyond repair. Walked back to the car, crestfallen. So later Kim and I went for a 11 mile cruise around the paved White Rock lake.
Next time I'll remember to bring the camera.

Somewhere on my body ( I'll leave that to your imagination ), I scored a pretty gnarly bruise from the saddle incident. I've never seen these colors on a bruise before.. So I had to share!!

Friday, June 10, 2005

IPOD TO: I froze my iPod
WEB TO: Directors Collection Vol #2

So with the launch of Everything Stupid comes a new wave of pressure that is self induced. My first big update is Monday and I haven't drawn a thing. Woo Hoo.. that's why I started this experiment to see if I can kick start my productivity!

Shawn Alan Peters came over last night with his new toy. At first I mocked him. Until I saw and heard it work. Check out the most awesome lightsaber replica ( read: toy ) I've ever seen.
From the makers over at: Master Replicas

( live video below -- 2 MB )

An update on the SCTV production gig. I finished up a "writers" package to send out to some prospective writers for the Pilot. I'm excited about the potential of getting some professional writers on board. SCTV is amped about moving forward, and it looks like we're going to produce the Trailer for the project at Janimation. That is to be seen, but we're in talks about that very thing. So hopefully by the end of this year we'll be shopping around a joint, SCTV, Janimation project created by Myself and Lee.


Tuesday, June 07, 2005

IPOD TO: Sparklehorse
WEB TO: Tadahiro Uesugi Illustration

If I can just talk a second about today's "WEB TO:" Recently, I've been talking to a friend about RSS feeds. What they are, how they are used.. etc. If you aren't sure what an RSS feed is, go ask Google. And since I have recently discovered Blogging in general, came exploration into the RSS feed. Supported by Firefox, RSS subscriptions are crazy cool user defined feeds! Well, the community of Blogging Illustrators, Cartoonists, and animators is amazingly lush! It's a huge resource for inspiration!
So I've been hoarding a bunch of my recent finds and posting them into my links page. Be sure to check them out! It's got me so charged up that I've got Jimmy on board with a new project.

The Idea is "Everything Stupid". Starting an E-zine, or a Creative Production Journal, is just another way of saying "self imposed deadline system". The idea is to start a "series" of creative thought in the form of art and follow it through to a pre-determined completion. The content can be anything determined by the artist. The whole goal is to simply produce art on a weekly bases. There will need to be some thread of unifying element between a "series". A "series" can be stopped and a new one can begin at anytime. The result will be an impressive body of work, organized in to a collection of "series" by various contributing artists.

So EXPLODE with creativity!!

Jimmy and I are going to post with our intentions to start the ball rolling. Then the plan is to have updates every Monday that are considered breakthroughs for the "series". These breakthroughs will be displayed and elaborated on by the artist if needed weekly.

It should be a fun exercise in creative thinking and practice. The later being what I addmittidly need to do. Practice my handskills.

Monday, June 06, 2005

IPOD TO: Johnny Hammond
WEB TO: Craig Harris' Frankenbulb

So Friday, Janimation took the afternoon to play Whirleyball. It was in celebration of a co-worker's 30th birthday. Well if you haven't experienced Whirleyball then let me tell you.. it's a crazy far out idea. It starts with bumper-cars on an electric basketball court. Add in a dash of Jai-Lai scoops, whiffleball, and some basketball backboards with holes cut in it and you have the makings of an interesting time. Some will claim it takes skill, some will claim it takes stratagy and teamwork. I claim it should be an olympic sport! We drank, played, ate cake.. good times were had by all.

I rediscovered an old college friends site today. ithinkican dot com Toby Craig is a comic illustrator who's been publishing independently since 96! Pretty impressive. So go enjoy his work, and email him that I sent you! ;-)

DJ Jazzy Jeff announcing the play-by-play at Whirlyball! Whirly What!?!?!!!????

Thursday, June 02, 2005

IPOD TO: Caribou - The Milk Of Human Kindness
WEB TO: Vintage Robot Porn

Well good news! Stranglehold was selected by the smart and wise people over at Gamespot as one of the top 10 best cinematic trailers at E3 this year! ( the largest E3 in history, mind you! )

So I've been on cloud 9 all day. So much so that I went ahead and updated the Animation Page with some new stuff, and re-linked the old stuff so it actually works! Yay me!

Wednesday, June 01, 2005

IPOD TO: Le Tigre -- This Island
WEB TO: Aeon Flux Cinematic!!

In my ongoing effort to figure out the purpose of this Blog I wanted to share something I came across lately.

a chat with john kricfalusi.

John Kricfalusi has been of course a huge source of inspiration in my sick and twisted upcoming. The article appears to just be a log-file from an online chat. There are some interesting tidbits, but what struct me as really particular was his insistance that there are no modern cartoons worth watching. I was amazed to find someone of his bearth saying that there are no good cartoons anymore. I don't know if that was a generalization, or if he truly doesn't like contemporary cartoons. Perhaps in context of Nickalodian, Cartoon Network, I could tend to agree with him. But, to say that in general, seems obtuse. I mean, you have to give props to the artists at Noodle Soup who bring us Venture Bros. The "animation" per say isn't what I would call good ( think minimul ). But they make up for it with writing. From the creators of the Tick.
Then you have shows like Dextor's Lab, and Samurai Jack. The term 'Animation' is used losely when describing Genndy Tartakovsky projects. However, as a cartoon, his design, color and layout are some of the most cutting edge western animation art i've come across.
Then if we're talking Internationally, then I would have Mr. K. watch: Samurai Champloo. Some of the most forward thinking and well animated concepts I've seen out of an anime series. With it's "hip-hop" soundtrack, and Production I.G. sensibilities, it's hard to ignore the mad awesome animation style.
And to look at even newer talent, you have to look at an academic level. So I bring you Alex Woo. His Rex Stele won a student academy award. His motion is well thought out, and stylized in a way that is reminesent of Don Bluth. The color is inspired, as are the layout and designs.
To say that there isn't any good cartoons anymore is turning an eye to the hordes of inspired and new animators who ARE doing great work. Animate on!

Riding in Shawn's Car with my new Camera.